Tag Archives: Beth

Ride the horse that you draw.

Just a few short years ago, I was still in college at Georgia State University, sitting in the student center with a friend while a club fair was taking place on the city streets outside. We were languidly draped across some mass-marketed contempo-esque* furniture, people watching like we were born to do it: smirking, rolling our eyes, flippantly dismissing the endless enthusiasm of our eager young peers.

Until I spotted it: a black velvet riding helmet.

Unmistakable in the otherwise bustling, urban, environment, it was resting on a folding table along with a virtually empty sign-up sheet and a poster board advertising Georgia State’s equestrian club.

“I have to go! Bye!” I screamed over my shoulder as I vaulted over chairs and bowled into students in my rush to get to the street before the mirage evaporated.

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Defying Cultural Stereotypes

The one, for example, that southerners don’t read/write.

If you’re a writer and you have content, you should keep an eye on this. If you’re a writer and you don’t have content, you should create content and keep an eye on this:


A Brief Summary of the 2011 TVPRA

Article originally published on Innocence Atlanta on September 16, 2011.

If you were unaware of the flurry of activity regarding National Call-In Day on September 8th, you might also have missed the point behind it: to encourage legislators to pass the 2011 version of the Trafficking Victims Reauthorization Act, or TVPRA, which is set to expire on September 30, 2011. However, even if you missed National Call-In day, it’s not too late to call your senators and encourage them to pass the bill. International Justice Mission makes activism easy by offering an idiot-proof guide to calling senators about the TVPRA.

Jesse Eaves, Policy Advisor for World Vision’s Children in Crisis program, stresses the extreme importance of the bill to anti-trafficking efforts:

“The Trafficking Victims Protection Act is hugely influential in giving other countries the support they need to step up their fight against trafficking…It is the best diplomatic tool we have, and if it is not renewed, the United States’ fight against trafficking will end on October 1.” (Health News)

So what’s so important about this bill, anyway?

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“From Survivors to Thrivers”: Restoring the Identities of CSEC victims

Originally posted on Innocence Atlanta on September 8, 2011. 

“Survival is your strength, not your shame.”
T.S. Elliott

Recently I saw a TV episode during which a man seeking fame and fortune irreversibly transforms his young daughter into a monster as a scientific experiment. Two passersby in the lives of the man and his daughter are seized with guilt, anger, and depression at the realization that there is nothing they can do to change the girl back into what she once was.

It’s doesn’t take a creative leap to draw a comparison between the story of the fictional girl and the story of a real youth whose future, dignity and hope is snatched away and exchanged for a life of shame and abuse. The average age that a young girl is initially commercially and/or sexually exploited by a pimp or john is between 12 and 14 years old. For boys and transgender youth, that age drops to between 11 and 13.

However: there’s also a significant difference between the two narratives.

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Society & Sex Trafficking

Originally posted on MeetJustice.org on August 12, 2011.

Sex Trafficking is society’s problem. We all bear the burden of exploitation. We pay for the medical services that victims receive, if they’re lucky, after brutal violence leaves them in need of urgent care. Children who are the product of commercial rape or rape by pimps are often repeatedly cycled through foster systems. Traffickers are left untouched by the law while their stable of victims, many of them underage, are shuffled through the court system, sometimes multiple times, with the state footing the bill for their booking, holding, and legal fees.

Not only is trafficking our burden – it’s our great shame. Commercial Sexual Exploitation is one of many proverbial elephants in the room in the U.S – and it’s getting more and more difficult to ignore how entangled it is with our own society’s norms.

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